PeopleSoft enhances federal HRMS package

PeopleSoft Inc. last month introduced a new version of its federal human resources management software (HRMS) suite that supports additional management functions and provides new features for accessing and managing data. PeopleSoft 7 HRMS for federal government users - a version of its basic HRMS software that has been tailored to meet federal requirements - supports automated management of payroll benefits administration and time and labor management. Beyond the basic functions PeopleSoft has added an application programming interface that will allow agencies to share data with third-party pay providers that are using software from other vendors said Ken Munson product strategy manager for PeopleSoft's federal HRMS products.

In addition PeopleSoft 7 allows agencies to set up a three-tier architecture in which an application server sits between the client and the database server. According to PeopleSoft this approach improves the overall performance of the software making it easier to serve clients over a wide-area network or over the Internet. For Internet users a new Java-based World Wide Web client integrates online support for analytic processing tools so users can make sophisticated data queries.

The company supports Cognos Corp.'s PowerPlay OLAP tools and Arbor Software Corp.'s Essbase OLAP Server. Moving from a two- to three-tier architecture should speed up transactions said Sandy Wiseman associate deputy assistant secretary for financial systems at the Department of Veterans Affairs. "This third tier that has been added tries to help modulate and regulate how transactions go to the data warehouse so that it improves the systems' efficiency " Wiseman said. The Energy Department also will take advantage of the new three-tier architecture to serve its 23 sites throughout the country. A three-tier architecture "will take a [big] strain off of our [WAN] which will help us tremendously " said Nancy Tomford DOE's project manager for the corporate human resource information system.

The VA is in the process of implementing PeopleSoft 7 for its HRLink$ payroll system which serves its 250 000 employees. Furthermore the VA intends to provide payroll services to other agencies using PeopleSoft 7. "PeopleSoft 7 will replace our legacy HR payroll system " Wiseman said. "We've been waiting for PeopleSoft to release this version because it has the payroll module." The new version will alleviate paperwork for [the] VA and other federal agencies that are bogged down with processing human resource and payroll transactions manually Wiseman said.

In addition to payroll transactions Wiseman said the agency intends to use the new release for automating the submission of personnel transactions appraisals and awards. "All of that stuff can be done without paper through PeopleSoft 7 " Wiseman said. DOE will use PeopleSoft 7 HRMS on its federal benefits and personnel transactions systems that process payments to 17 000 employees nationwide.

The agency is looking forward to give its users access to data and tools through the Web Tomford said. "A major goal of ours is to get rid of non-value-added work performed in the personnel office get rid of forms and we hope improve productivity by giving employees more time at their desk " she said. Milford Sprecher an IT industry analyst at IDC Government said the release gives PeopleSoft an added advantage in the federal marketplace. "Obviously they already have many federal government clients and this new suite of products gives them an edge in that area over competing companies " he said.

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